Social Justice (Biblical Roots)

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Understanding the Christian Role

40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

The world we live in seems to be as divided as I have ever seen it. The political arena is a place of hatred and despair. I don’t know if the country was any more divided during the great Civil War. Divisions ran deep in those days as well. One of our local heroes was a prominent figure in bringing a divided country back together during those days. The country was divided by many things but the one problem which seems to have always come to the forefront has always been about equality. Today seems to be no different, and I wonder as I pray you do, what did we learn from all of those deaths?
Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address
"Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.
"Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.
"But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
The Cemetery of Gettysburg
Edward Everett was to be the featured speaker. The dedication of the cemetery was to be on October 23rd, but was delayed until Mid-November. The choice for the lead speaker was Edward Everett, and he was said to need more time to prepare for the dedication. On November 2nd, just weeks before the dedication was to happen Wills extended an invitation to President Lincoln asking him “to formally set apart these grounds to their sacred use by a few appropriate remarks”
President Lincoln considered it quite significant that both great victories at Gettysburg and Vicksburg had occured on the 4th of July, the anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

42 For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.

Do you remember the stories of these days? I read the complete version of the Gettysburg Address. Considered to be one of the greatest messages ever given. Lincoln’s entire message lasted a mere two minutes, but the message changed a country divided and crushed and moved it towards a country that Lincoln would help to heal.
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